According to the Veterans Affairs website “veteran” means a person who served in the active military, naval, or air service, and who was discharged or released therefrom under conditions other than dishonorable. On November 11th we will remember and honor our veterans. Here’s a little history about Veteran’s Day:
Though the first World War didnot officially end until the signing of the Treaty of Versailles in June 1919, fighting between the Allies and Germany stopped months earlier when a temporary cessation of hostilities, or armistice, went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.
President Wilson proclaimed the first commemoration of Armistice Day on 11 November1919. The original concept for the celebration was a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business at 11 a.m.
In 1938 Congress enacted a law that made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday – a day dedicated to world peace and to be celebrated and known as “Armistice Day.” Armistice Day was primarily a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I; but in 1954 Congress amended the Act of 1938 by replacingthe word “Armistice” with “Veterans.” With the approval of this legislation, November 11th became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.
Americans observe Veterans Day on November 11, regardless of what day of the week on which it falls. Through the years since it was established, the observance was moved to the nearest Monday to provide for a long holiday weekend but that practice ended in 1978.The restoration of Veterans Day to November 11 not only preserves the historical significance of the date but helps focus attention on the important purpose of Veterans Day.
President Eisenhower issued the first “Veterans Day Proclamation” in 1954 and Presidents continue this practice to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.